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Pontiac Bonneville



  • smfransmfran Posts: 432
    Ezrapon - Thanks for the pic. Your T/A is really special. I also like your Midnight Blue SSEi. Are you sure you are a teacher!?
    At first I did not go with the pinstripe, but after bringing it home and listening to my wife and son, and reading other posts in the beginning of this forum, I went for it and am glad I did. It does add something to the wide body panels.
    I just got back from test driving my neighbor's 2000 Camaro SS. With standard tranny and over 300 horses, talk about a throwback. I really enjoyed driving it. It threw me back in my seat the way my T-Type did. I miss that.
  • dmckeowndmckeown Posts: 107
    Thanks for sending the picture of your SSEi and your Trans Am , they do look nice together , makes me wish I never sold my 69 TA back in 75 , that one and a few others , oh well .
    I will try to get a picture of my CAI modification this week and send it to you , although it looks like rain till Wednesday around here and I don't drive the SSEi in the rain if I don't have too. I'll snag a digital camera out of a lab or something . Doug
  • intense01intense01 Posts: 107
    OK guys, I have another idea on how to wake up our SSEi's a little bit more.

    Camshaft lobe lift on the stock L67 engine is listed at .258"/.255" (Intake/Exhaust). With the stock 1.6:1 roller rocker arms, this gives theoretical valve lift values of .413"/.408".

    They make an aftermarket set of 1.8:1 roller rockers for the LS1 engine. If these will fit our heads, we should get valve lift of .465"/.459".

    If these rockers will work on our engine, I would guess that the exhaust note would become 'crisper', and we'd gain a minimum of 10 horsepower. With improved intake and exhaust systems, I think the gains would be significantly higher.

    I've searched high and low through the '00 LS1 and '00 L67 Helm manuals, and can't seem to verify if these rocker arms would be interchangeable. So, I am forced to do the next best thing. I have sent my girlfriend off to the Pontiac dealer to buy one an L67 and an LS1 rocker arm. If they are interchangeable, I plan to order a set of the 1.8:1 arms from Crane Cams.

    Anyone have any thoughts?
  • ezraponezrapon Posts: 348
    I have done this before in the old days with pontiac 400 engines. Using the ram air engine ratio rocker arms on the standard 400 head for performance gains. This was sort of a poor man's cam swap. The Ls1 is so different than the 350 buick small block.... the fore father of our 3.8, I'd be surprised if they were even close, but stranger things have happen. I think the GTP guys would have stumbled onto any quick HP fixes, but again... stranger things! I'm guess a cam change on a transverse mounted engine would be too much.
    After each mod, I'm having more torque steer issues... almost too much traction, i guess this is the nature of the beast... didn't seem so unpredictable in the 300 hp STS... better engineering in the caddy????
  • dmckeowndmckeown Posts: 107
    I guess when I say no drawbacks to my last modifications I'm ignoring the torque steer , probably cause I've had front drive cars for so long now . My car is a handfull when WOT is applied at low speeds , I never have the traction control on . Two hands are needed on the wheel to minimize this effect . Probably intense with his 18" tires has a little less of this then we do with stock 17" tires
  • adomeradomer Posts: 2
    Intend to look at both cars next week. Would like to hear any thoughts from others who looked at both and chose the Bonnie.

  • dmckeowndmckeown Posts: 107
    I wanted more performance then the 300M offered and the stock SSEi had it . I am VERY HAPPY now that I have found out how easy and cheaply I was able to modify my 2000 SSEi for even more horse power and driving pleasure
  • dmckeowndmckeown Posts: 107
    Ezrapon , did you get the pictures I sent you of the Thrasher CAI and the pinstripe ?
  • ezraponezrapon Posts: 348
    Got the pics. The CAI looks better than I expected. It actually dresses up the engine compartment. Too bad you had to modify it to fit.
    I guess we will always be the GTP step-children. I guess I'm the only guy who chose not to opt for the pin stripe. Still have not seen one in person up close.
  • dmckeowndmckeown Posts: 107
    SMFRAN got me thinking about a pinstripe . So after having my car for a week or so I took it back to the dealer to have them remove some swirl marks they left when they buffed and waxed it . They put the pinstripe on for free for the inconveince of bringing it back . Only problem , they put white on instead of gray so I will replace it some time with two thin gray ones instead of one thick one thin like it has .
    As for the Thrasher CAI I think it looks better in the SSEi then in the Grand Prix because of the brace going over it in the GP . If anyone else wants to see the pictures post your E mail address
  • snicklesnickle Posts: 147
    dmckeown talk about performance. As far as style the SSEi is High-Tech the 300M is retro. The 300m has much better cupholders.
  • My e-mail is [email protected]
  • smfransmfran Posts: 432
    The double thin gray striping is what I have, with a custom-look detailing at the points (ends). I truly think it adds subtle flair.
    As far as Bonnie SSEi vs. Chrysler 300M is concerned, I test drove both at a Pontiac sponsored test track at Foxboro Stadium in Massachusetts. The Bonnie way out performed the 300M. The bottom line is that it boils down to priorities.
    1) GM vs. Chrysler
    2) Styling
    3) Performance
    4) Individuality
    For me, I prefer that GM feeling (I've had 10 GM cars and loved them all). The styling of the Bonneville is fresh and new. With the Chrysler family of cars, you are one in a million; my car turns heads. Also I like having one of the fastest production cars made.
  • ezraponezrapon Posts: 348
    My brother sells Chrysler products and I could have had one at dealer cost. He told me there is still build quality issues (as with all Chrysler products) and horrible resale. In one year they drop well over 10 grand... this may be a St. Louis factor due to so many lease returns. The Lesser Bonnevilles (se) don't seem to stand up to close scrutiny of resale either. I would seem Chrysler inflates there H.P. ratings... GM products with much less H.P. are turning in a whole lot better track times... maybe it's the torque output.
  • Sorry couldn't help but peruse this topic comparing big "fast" cars.

    I guess smfran is right, he does have one of the faster big cars in production, the key word being production *grin* unfortunately the general killed off the last of the true big cars that you can actually tinker with in the garage, race at the track and haul people and @ss all day long with -- The 94 to 96 Impala SS

    With about 200 dollars worth of performance mods I have shaved my quarter mile from 15.6x (same as tested by MT) to 15.1x a full half second.... the next half second won't be a cheap but it will still be thousands less than a new 300M or Bonnie.

    My track times are with a fully loaded car, full tank of gas, full size spare in trunk and higher than stock tire pressure. If I can hook the tires better next time and lower my 60 foot times I should break high 14s. A few guys from my Impala club run low 13s without NOS and get into 12s with NOS... you should see a car that big move that fast it seems to defy physics.
  • smfransmfran Posts: 432
    If you are familiar with this forum, you know I've had five Bonnevilles. I was quite interested in the '94 Impala SS, thinking at the time that after two Bonnevilles (an '88 and '91) I would check out something different. I did like it but couldn't go for the shift on the column. I know that Chevy added a console in either '95 or '96, but by then it was too late. I became hooked on the Bonneville.
    You may also know that I owned the fastest production car made in '86. The Buick Regal T-type with 3.8 intercooled turbo. It was great to read at the time how upset the Chevy people were with Buick about them surpassing the Vette. I really enjoyed going from 0 - 60 in 4.7 seconds!
  • Yeah of course Chevy fixed the Impala perfectly for 1996 shifter on floor with a tach still at bargin price and then got rid of it, good thing I have a 96 :)

    I'm not super familiar with the turbo 3.8 but wasn't there at least 2 flavors of that engine. I thought the real stormer hipo one came only in the GNX and that one was the 4.7 to 60 range car. Weren't the others like the T-type and regular GNs more along the lines of high 5 seconds? Either way they were awesome sedans (and yes I'll call them 2 door sedans because they were big and bad)

    My hope is that Chrysler will really build the Charger R/T because that is the only car I can see trading in my Impala for. This thing has ruined me for all other cars. My dad's Intrepid ES with autostick and sport suspension is a smaller snail. I hope Dodge supercharges that gem of an engine the 4.7L. I drove a dakota with one of those and man is that a great engine for such small displacement. It even pulls hard down low like a 350.

    My neighbor is a nut he traded in his Z06 world beater for a 2001 STS the only thing I like is his HID headlamps which are truely awesome. At least now I can bench race him now that the STS is getting heavier and slower it won't turn high 14s off the showroom floor anymore.
  • smfransmfran Posts: 432
    You are right about a more powerful version of the 3.8 turbo. The regular intercooled one in '86 and '87 was rated at 235 HP and 0-60 @ 4.7 seconds. The '87 GNX (only 500 produced), was rated somewhere around 300 HP. I don't know it's 0-60 time.
    The closest I've come lately to feeling the power that my T-Type had, was when I tested out my neighbor's '00 Camaro SS last week. With 300 HP and 6 on the floor, it moves! I know it's too small for you so maybe you should check out an SSEI!!
  • intense01intense01 Posts: 107
    The front sway bar is installed.

    Stock front bar was 30mm., and is now 32mm.(1.25"). Stock rear bar was 20mm. hollow, and is now 25mm.(1") solid. The car had rubber frame mount and end link bushings originally, and now they are all polygraphite.

    The SSEi feels very well balanced - front to rear. With the P255/45ZR18 tires it will now change lanes hard enough to smash a passenger's head off the side window. Not that we'd ever want to do that to anyone we let ride in our cars...
  • snicklesnickle Posts: 147
    Where did you find the FRont Bar? Did you replace the bushings and endlinks?

    I have new endlinks for the front, just have not put them on.
  • snicklesnickle Posts: 147
    Got the 3.25 pulley on and the 180 degree thermo?

    Question: I have been having a noise and vibration from the front end, when I turn the wheel at low speeds (i.e. parking lots) I thought maybe the belt got messed up, when they replaced the alternator. I replaced the belt and same thing. Any ideas? Power Steering pump?
  • dmckeowndmckeown Posts: 107
    Fluid level and color OK? How's the three twenty five feel , even more fun right ? You are still running an open cone or what
  • dmckeowndmckeown Posts: 107
    Sounds like your having fun with your SS ! Now if you have been following us you know that any GM supercharged 3800 since 97 model year are easy and cheap to get 35 or more horses out of , a smaller pulley and a K&N air filter , after that it does get more diff. and expensive . Some of those GTP guy's are really turning some good times at the tracks
  • snicklesnickle Posts: 147
    Color and level seem fine.

    No I am not running the cone at the moment. Took it off for vacation. I may slap it back on and see. I need to find time to build the CAI.

    With the 3.25 it seems much more responsive at the low end. Have not had a chance to push it yet. I had discaonnected the battery for 2 hours to clear the auto tuning. I wanted to run the car some before I pushed it. I modified the install of the PVI unit. We'll see if it helps, if not I will return it.
  • dmckeowndmckeown Posts: 107
    I was very pleased when I had to reset my codes by unhooking battery that there is a memory battery so you don't have to reprogram every thing . Do you know where that battery is located ? Just wondering
  • snicklesnickle Posts: 147
    I don't think it is a battery per se. Just nonvolatile ram. I'll check the Helm when I get home.
  • intense01intense01 Posts: 107
    Have your wife sit in the car, and turn the wheel to it's limits while you hang out under the hood. Use a large long-handled screwdriver or a piece of heater hose to determine the noise source. If you use a screwdriver, you can put the blade right on the side of the alternator while the handle is pressed right up against your ear, using your cupped hand to filter out other noises. Move the screwdriver or heater hose from component to component until you find the noise source.

    By the way, did you use a smaller supercharger belt when you switched to the smaller pulley?

    I got Saner to build a prototype 1.25" front bar. His part number is SPFGM25. I also added polyurethane frame mount and end link bushings.
  • snicklesnickle Posts: 147
    Yes I switched to a 71.5:" belt. I'll try the suggestion on the noise.

  • You bet I follow all big fast cars, I know that the 3800 is a great engine. If there was no car like the SS I'd probably have a supercharged Bonne... or I actually had my eye on the ultimate sleeper LSS *wink* now that car can really come out of nowhere to surprise people would be nice to soup up one of them with some really nice underpinnings.

    I wonder, do any of you guys take the Bonne to the track? Are you guys getting into the 14s with your pully and exhaust mods? The one thing you have going for you is less weight than my SS. Kinda looks weak when you clean up the front tires in the waterbox though :( I imagine it is hard to launch a front driver with that torque. With my SS I need to let the suspension set up a bit before I roll into and eventually bury the throttle or I'll burn up the Comp T/As.

    The one nice thing about modifying the LT1 is that little things can make a big difference cause they are multiplied over 350 cubes...
    Just freeing up the intake and exhaust nets you about 20 rear wheel hp. I don't know if you guys are familiar with the B-body intake but it is sickeningly restricted I pulled mine and use a Camaro elbow connected to PVC that hooks up with the stock airbox. (not the best setup but gets you 90 percent of a $300 system for 50 bucks)

    I think it would be big fun to race a few Bonnes at the track who knows when I got on Friday maybe I'll see some. Usually the only big modern 4 doors are GM B-bodies or the ocassional Northstar Caddy.
  • snicklesnickle Posts: 147
    I been meaning to get to the track and see what numbers I can post. Time is hard to come by. Hopefully by next spring all my mods will be done and I can let her rip.
This discussion has been closed.